The facts on fish

CHOICE investigates the benefits and risks of eating fish.
Learn more
  • Updated:19 Oct 2008


Fishmonger's display

In brief

  • Evidence shows that eating two or three meals of oily fish a week lowers your risk of heart disease.
  • Fish at the top of the food chain, such as swordfish, marlin and shark, could contain mercury at levels that harm infants and small children. These species are also least likely to be harvested sustainably.
  • There are plenty of fish species, both fresh and processed, that are good for you and are harvested sustainably.

We know fish is good for us. It’s low in saturated fat, high in protein and a good source of iodine. Oily fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and is a good source of vitamins A and D.

But there are concerns that some fish is contaminated with mercury or other harmful chemicals – and that predatory commercial fishing methods are stripping the oceans of fish, killing seabirds, dolphins and turtles, and destroying coral reefs. CHOICE investigates the benefits and risks of eating fish.

CHOICE verdict

The good news is that we found plenty in fish shops and supermarkets that are both good for you and are harvested with minimal damage to fish stocks or the environment. See our table for the best options.

Please note: this information was current as of October 2008 but is still a useful guide today.



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